Husband of close friend and my wife's co-worker (teacher & librarian), was on the California 7 Dec 1941. He was trapped below decks and spent several days there until being rescued. Meanwhile his loss had been reported to his family. Later telegram from Uncle Sam announced his survival.
His next ship was the heavy cruiser ASTORIA. He was on the ASTORIA when sunk at Savo Island battle and was duly announced as a KIA a second time. His death notification had to be reversed later. He served 20 years and retired a Quartermaster, 1st class.
As I do every December 7, I pause to remember those whose lives were lost that Sunday and give thanks for those who survived. They include some of my relatives:
Woods, Lawrence Eldon. F1c, US Navy, USS Oklahoma (KIA) - cousin
Woods, Winfred Oral. MM1c, US Navy, USS Oklahoma (KIA) - cousin
Fugate, Paul Reuel. CMoMM, USS Sunnadin - cousin
Billingsley, Oliver Leon. Lt., US Navy, MCAS Kaneohe - uncle
The Woods were brothers from the same small town, Greenwood, in north Texas. Win is buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Punchbowl Crater on Oahu. He was one of those trapped in a lower compartment when Oklahoma overturned after taking at least 5 Japanese torpedoes and apparently survived until just minutes before rescuers cut into the hull to rescue those trapped. Lawrence's remains were not identified until 2019. Cousin Paul, as a member of Sunnadin 's crew, was actively involved in the rescue and salvage operations following the Japanese attack. To his dying day he could not talk about the carnage he had seen. He had transferred off Oklahoma just a month before the attack.
Uncle Oliver and Aunt Mynila (my dad's sister) and daughter lived not far from Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe, where Oliver was stationed, on the east side of Oahu. All survived the attack. Oliver went on to serve out the war on a destroyer. His daughter, my young cousin Betty Ann, "souvenired" several pieces of wreckage from the Zero fighter flown by Lt. Fusata Iida, a flight leader off the Japanese carrier Soryu who was shot down, crashed on the Air Station, and was killed and later buried there. Their story is told in No One Avoided Danger by Wenger, Cressman, and DiVirgilio.